Chemical Warfare: point scoring and compound discovery

Sun 11 Jan 2015, 16:34 by bencelot



Today I spent most of the day working on point scoring and the discovery of compounds. The discovery of compounds simply means that the compounds do not show in the minimap at the start of the game, and must be discovered before they show up (like a fog of war). In team games they will show up once your faction has discovered it instead, so at the start of the game you can all split up and try find them asap. So yeah I did that. It's kinda fun just trying to find them all, especially in a big map like Supply. But more importantly it makes each round seem to have more of a story or progression. The first minutes of the game requires you to explore for compounds and try stay alive. There's also the question as to whether you should buy a gun (to help killing) or a vehicle (to help exploring) or just save your money and rush for the Base Chemicals asap. It also encourages teamwork as players can ping the locations of compounds they've found. Ideally I want to balance it so with 10 compounds on a big map like Supply you need to hurry (or use teamwork) to actually discover all the compounds before you save up enough money to buy your Base Chemicals, otherwise you'll be wasting time exploring when you could be base building.

I also spent a lot of time working on how the points are going to work. It's a bit tricky because there are a number of sub game modes and they all work in slightly different ways:

1) Individual victory with no recapturing: This is the standard game and the point system is easy here. You get 1 point per compound you capture. First to capture all the points wins, and they will naturally have the highest score.
2) Individual victory with recapturing: This will only be enabled for FFA, but in this setting you can lose points. Again, you only get 1 point per compound but if someone recaptures your compound then you lose that point. This is the most extreme and crazy game option because it's winner takes all. For someone to win this game they need to capture ALL the points by themselves finishing the game with 10 points and everyone else having 0. Very hard to do.
3) Team victory with no recapturing: This is simple enough. It's the first team to capture all the compounds. Obviously there must be more than 10 here, maybe 50 is better. But for ranked games how do we measure players? Simply through how many they capture. So if it's a 2v2 game and you and I are on the scientist team and we win, you might have captured 35 and me 15, and those will be our points. Basically same as before, you get 1 point per compound you capture. The trick here is though that you can't capture a compound that another ally has already captured.
4) Team victory with recapturing: This is the strange one. Here you will get 1 point per compound that you capture, but you will NOT lose points if they get recaptured. So it might go back and forth for ever and you might end up with a score of 130 even though there are only 50 compounds in the map, simply because you've been going back and forth over and over and you've actually had to capture 130 compounds before you finally won. The reason why you lose points when recapturing is enabled for individual games is because the person who finally captures all the compounds must have the highest score. Also you are soley responsible for defending your own compounds. But in team games you shouldn't be incentivized to defend your own compounds instead of your allies. You should defend them all, and if you don't lose points if the compounds you captured get retaken then you won't worry about it.

Anyway this is what I did today. I also had to make sure that the score and compounds players have captured/discovered is saved permanently to the server so even if you leave and rejoin then it'll still be there. This will allow us to set up massive MMO type games that go for weeks!


6 Comments


STM1993 says:

Sun 11 Jan 2015, 17:21


bencelot wrote:
1) Individual victory with no recapturing: This is the standard game and the point system is easy here. You get 1 point per compound you capture. First to capture all the points wins, and they will naturally have the highest score.

You mean the person with the most number of captures once all 10 compounds have already been seized?

bencelot wrote:
discovery of compounds

How do you discover compounds? Simply walk in the vicinity and you'd find them, or you need to place revealing chemicals first? Because the latter would be REALLY draggy since it expects you to build a base first to get reveal chemicals before you can even discover compounds...


bencelot says:

Sun 11 Jan 2015, 17:36


STM1993 wrote:
bencelot wrote:
1) Individual victory with no recapturing: This is the standard game and the point system is easy here. You get 1 point per compound you capture. First to capture all the points wins, and they will naturally have the highest score.

You mean the person with the most number of captures once all 10 compounds have already been seized?


Nope, I mean the first person to capture all 10. By default multiple players can capture the same compound so if there are 10 compounds in the map we will all be competing to capture all 10 first. We can both have captured the same one, but eventually one of us is going to reach 10 first and they are the one who will win the game. It's only when recapturing is enabled that this sharing goes away, and then only 1 person can hold a compound at a time. If you previously captured and I come along and recapture it, then you no longer have it. But by default, we can both have it.

Quote:

bencelot wrote:
discovery of compounds

How do you discover compounds? Simply walk in the vicinity and you'd find them, or you need to place revealing chemicals first? Because the latter would be REALLY draggy since it expects you to build a base first to get reveal chemicals before you can even discover compounds...


Compounds always show up in the map, it's only chemicals which are invisible. This discovery is simply to make them show up in the MINIMAP. And all you have to do is walk on top of them to have them start showing up. You don't even need to do this, but it's certainly helpful and you're going to want to find them all anyway so you can make an informed decision about where to place your base.

For the record there is no such thing as a revealing chemical anymore, only a destroying chemical (Neutralizer). Seeing as you can't reveal enemy chemicals, the only way to know where to place your Neutralizer is to use deduction to figure it out. For example, if you see a player run around a dark corner with no chemical on him and then 2 seconds later he does have a chemical on him, then you know he must have a base there.


Nightfall says:

Sun 11 Jan 2015, 18:06


In FFA there should be no points for kills but in TDM there should... It would honestly make tactical sense to make the teams newbies buy chemicals with their money while the vets protect them. I might not get very many captures but I made sure my team will.


bencelot says:

Sun 11 Jan 2015, 18:37


I've been thinking about this but think it'll be extremely hard to balance. How many points for a kill, how many for a capture? It's also not consistent. Also I'm trying to avoid the constant rush to get as many kills as possible like you see in the other game modes. I want this game mode to be more immersive and strategic and to get away from the non-stop blind charging into the enemies base (which is what you would be incentivized to do if getting kills asap gave you points).

Besides, being good at killing (and good at staying alive, basically having a good KD) directly relates to how much money you earn through the new kill reward system anyway, and so players will indirectly be rewarded for getting kills because they'll have more cash and as a result more captures. Also capturing a compound isn't easy. You need to do it at the right time, from the right angle, to make sure that you can survive the 3s channelling time required to place the chemical. I want a player's ability to do this to be reflected in their score. Not only will veterans have more money and be able to afford more compound captures, but they'll be better at doing it too.


bencelot says:

Mon 12 Jan 2015, 08:28


Actually I've been thinking about this a bit more and I think you have a good point about trying to encourage teamwork through the point scoring. I don't think rewarding kills is the way to do it, but what we can do is give players 10 points per capture instead of 1. Then in team games your ALLIES will get +3 points whenever you capture a compound as well. Now they have a very clear incentive to help you get the capture because they'll be getting points out of it too, thus improving their ranking in relation to their enemies. This would only apply in team games of course. This could be really fun now because you can say "yo allies, who needs help capturing a compound?" then escort them to the compound, clear the area and let them capture it, rewarding you with +3 points :D Teams can develop effective tactics to storm an area effectively to ensure the capture is successful. Teams that work together are going to capture more compounds and as a result not only win the game, but get more points in the process.

I think this blog thing is a good idea. You guys can help me with things I've overlooked as I develop it so we don't need to revise everything after it's released :p


bencelot says:

Mon 12 Jan 2015, 10:29


Man I've just been thinking, this is an amazing idea. 10 points to the person who captures the compound and 3 to all the allies on the team. This creates the most amazing incentives for teamwork. The success of your allies directly impacts your own success so you genuinely want them to succeed. In ranked games you want them to capture as many compounds as possible because you need those extra points to rank higher than your enemies in the final scoreboard. Your own individual skill is still rewarded because you get 10 points for your own captures, so if you're good you'll naturally pull ahead of your allies, but you still need as much help as you can get and want your allies to succeed too. You will help them earn cash, place chemicals and capture compounds as all of this directly impacts your final score.

Imagine a 5v5 where all players are of an equal individual skill level but the scientists work together and the rebels do not. As time goes on players manage to save up the necessary $10,000 to buy a capture chemical. The average player will earn approximately $3000 per minute ($2000/min passive, 1:1KD means they'll get their kill reward half the time so another $1000/minute there. Add in a bit more for gangsters, missions and alchemy, take out a bit for buying weapons etc). So at $3000 per minute each player will be ready to buy a capture compound every 4 minutes or so. What the scientists can do is say "alright guys I've got my $10,000 now. I'll buy the capture chemical and let's all storm the helipad to capture it." Then they work as a team and because the whole team is there and the dude carrying the super expensive chemical is travelling in the middle of the pack he survives and captures it successfully. He gets 10 points and everyone else gets 3 points. Good times for the team! Because by now someone else has got $10,000 saved up and so the team escorts him to capture the next one. This team continues to work together capturing points with a 100% success rate and they all get a nice big score.

Now look at the unorganised rebels. While they are just as skillful as the scientists individually, they do not work as a team. They just do their own thing, don't "waste time" escorting their allies to capture compounds, and basically play their own game. When they get $10,000 they run off on their own to capture the compound but because they're on their own they fail. They don't group up and so sometimes they get killed in the process of capturing. This is a complete waste of money and a missed point. As a result the rebels don't capture as many points as the scientists, the scientists win the game and when the respect ranking occurs the scientists have higher scores on average and rank up.

We can see that teamwork is definitely rewarded when Team Victory is enabled, and I think it works in a really fun way as well. Good teams will be rewarded for escorting chemical carriers and making sure they don't get killed while transporting the chemical. They will need to group up as a squad to clear the area surrounding the compound (randomly placed btw so different every time!). Then they'll need to actually defend the player as he rushes in to capture the point. Imagine getting 3 of your allies to use BT or Force Fields to create a defensive barrier around you while you do the 3s channeling time to capture. So cool! And it would actually work too. Really excited to see how this plays!

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